Rugby | SPORTS

Big challenge ahead: Fuli

It will be do-or-die for the Fijiana women's 7s rugby side at the Commonwealth Games, which starts tonight at the Coventry sta­dium, England.
29 Jul 2022 12:32
Big challenge ahead: Fuli
Fijiana 7s captain Rusila Nagasau (front) with Vasiti Solikoviti and Ana Naimasi after their training session at the University of Warwick in Bir­mingham, England, on July 27, 2022. Photo: Supplied

It will be do-or-die for the Fijiana women’s 7s rugby side at the Commonwealth Games, which starts tonight at the Coventry sta­dium, England.

In a zoom conference yesterday, head coach Saiasi Fuli said they are faced with a tough pool which includes Scotland, South Africa and Australia.

They take on Scotland at 8:22pm today, South Africa at 4:30am and Australia at 8:22pm tomorrow re­spectively.

“So far, so good with our prepara­tions,” Fuli said.

“It is a very challenging task as we have a very solid pool.

“We are in a very good mood to go out play well and get a medal.”

Playing in the Oceania 7s, Fuli was able to gauge some craftiness of the Australian team against South Africa in the Toulouse 7s in France in May but they have not played against Scotland recently.

“There has been a lot of work be­hind the scene, doing our own re­search and analysis.

“I know we can’t measure the true analysis of the last game; there will be some changes, developments and improvements along the way.

“We have to expect the unexpected and be ready for the weekend.

“We only have eight teams and two pools; it’s a do or die situation.

“For us, our mindset is that we have to play five finals this weekend.”

The Fijiana team had played warm up matches against Police, Tabada­mu and Dominions Brothers men’s teams.

“Even though we have lost some players through injuries, I am con­fident that the squad we have right now can do the job; for us it is to go play well and produce results.”

Tinai is 13th player

Lavenia Tinai is the 13th player on the side after Fuli named his 12-women for the Games.

Replacing winger Laisana Likuce­va is Laisani Moceisawana who was named in the travelling reserves with Tinai.

Likuceva did not travel with the side due to some personal commit­ments while Maria Rokotuisiga has joined the Fiji Police Force Basic Re­cruitment course (BRCC).

“Moceisawana was improving in the past 12 months in terms of devel­opment, learning the trade, quickly adapting to our system and she fitted in on so well.

“She has been gelling well with our core group. She has gradually im­proved the past 12 months.

“The Commonwealth is not a benchmark or building tournament for World Cup. This is a major tour­nament. It only happens after four years. It only comes once, so you have to enjoy this, opportunity,” Fuli added.

Fijiana 7s squad: Rusila Nagasau (C), Vasiti Solikoviti, Reijieli Dav­eua, Verenaisi Bari, Vani Buleki, Lavena Cavuru, Viniana Riwai, Ivamere Nabura, Sesenieli Donu, Reapi illunisau, Ana Naimasi, Lai­sani Moceisawana.


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